AMES, Iowa – Oct.
18, 2013 – To highlight National Teen
Driver Safety Week, Oct. 20-26, the Iowa Department of Transportation echoes
the commemoration’s theme of “It Takes Two: Shared Expectations for Teens and
Parents for Driving.”
This time of
year many of us are preparing our vehicles for winter driving. Preparing our
younger drivers should also be included in the winter plan. Getting behind the
wheel for the first time on a wintery day can be nerve-wracking, even for an
otherwise “invincible” teenager. Learning to drive can be scary for the student
and driving instructor, typically a parent or other adult. Novice drivers need additional
instruction on the safest methods of driving on snow and ice.
Some tips for
those assisting a novice driver include:
a smart choice:
A novice driver's first on-the-road experience with winter weather driving
should not be during a major storm. Practice while conditions are moderate
and delay on-the-road driving until conditions are less severe.
Start out having the teen practice driving on slippery roads in daylight.
Once the driver has gained sufficient experience driving during the
daylight hours, gradually give them experience driving on slippery roads
at night, when factors like black ice or whiteout conditions could be a
the waters (frozen water that is): Allow the young driver to practice in a vacant,
snow- or ice-covered parking lot where slow-speed maneuvers can be mastered
with little risk to the vehicle and its passengers. Practice braking and
steering in skidding situations.
‘em some room: Explain
to the young driver the importance of maintaining adequate space between
vehicles, demonstrating in a safe location the difference in stopping
distances on dry pavement and slick roads.
and be seen:
Before starting out on the road, make sure the vehicle’s windows,
headlights and taillights are cleared of ice and snow.
it out: Winter
weather puts your vehicle’s mechanical systems and performance to the
test. Make sure the vehicle the novice driver operates is in top working
order, including all mechanical systems, including brakes and the
be prepared when traveling during the winter by carrying a winter survival
kit in the vehicle. View the Iowa DOT’s winter preparedness video on
YouTube with your novice driver at http://www.youtube.com/iowadot.
preparation – is the trip necessary? Often, delaying a trip by a few hours can give snow
removal crews time to get the roads back to normal winter driving
on road conditions:
Visit http://511ia.org/ to discover all of the ways in
which travel information is available via the web, social media, phone and
your mobile device.